W. Beckwith History of Montgomery County, Indiana (Chicago: HH Hill,
DAVIS, deceased. Among those men who have left marks of their effort
in Crawfordsville, and have figured prominently in the busy streets
of this industrious city, the name off Jacob Davis is by no means
forgotten. He had worked, not only with muscle, for this had been
guided by an active brain, and visible signs of his success in life
is shown by a pleasant home and a competency for his family. Jacob
Davis was born October 29, 1817, in a rural district of Butler County,
Ohio. His parents, Randolph and Abigail (Hoel) Davis, were natives
of New Jersey, and came to Ohio prior to their marriage, becoming
Ohio farmers. Jacob learned early the real meaning of the word "toil."
He grew to manhood, and by improving the limited educational advantages
secured education sufficient to enable him to teach public 'school,
which he followed for some time. He became quite an active trader
in stock and was for some time a partner of Jacob D. Early, of Terre
Haute, in the pork business. In the prime of life Mr. Davis cast
his lot in Crawfordsville, first purchasing the warehouse at the
north end of Washington Street. Here he dealt in grain extensively,
first in partnership with John Switzer. For eighteen years he owned
the warehouse. Toward the close of this period he was associated
in the grain trade with his brother, Isaac Davis, and with Gen.
M. D. Manson, present auditor of state. He also traded largely in
grain in Chicago. During the war Mr. Davis speculated in gold stocks.
His life was emphatically one of trade, and by good judgment his
trade-life was a grand success. In the winter of 1875 he took a
severe cold, producing lung and typhoid fever, which resulted in
his death April 21, 1876. A short time before demise he requested
the presence of Rev. Reece Davis, a Baptist minister of Indianapolis,
whom he greatly admired. At his request also his remains were laid
to rest by the Masonic fraternity, in which society he had been
a prominent member, and had been worshipful master for years. Although
not connected with any Church he was a man of strict integrity and
morals. In politics he was republican, but never sought political
preferment. Prior to his marriage he was colonel of the state militia.
March 10, 1853, he was married, at the age of thirty-five, to Elizabeth
Allen, daughter of the Hon. Joseph and Margara (James) Allen, and
who had, when ten years of age, been his pupil in the public school.
She was born November 21, 1829, in Kentucky, the native state of
her parents. The Allens came to Montgomery County in 1833, and settled
in Brown Township on the farm on which they died. Joseph Allen was
a prominent democrat. He served as justice of the peace for many
years, was sheriff four years, and represented his friends in the
state senate when the constitution of Indiana was revised. He also
was a member of the state legislature for some time. He was a prominent
Mason. He died January 29, 1871, and his wife followed May 1, 1875.
She was a member of the Baptist Church. Both were widely known and
highly respected citizens. Mrs. Davis now resides in Crawfordsville
with her four children: Isaac M., Joseph A., Mary I. and Charles
E. An infant, and Jacob F. (three years old), deceased. The children
were born in Crawfordsville. Isaac M. was born December 31, 1853.
He was educated at Wabash College, and from 1874 to 1875 he read
law with White and Cowan. In 1876 he graduated from the law department
of the Iowa State University, and the same year settled in Crawfordsville
for the practice of his profession. He was admitted to the bar in
the fall of 1876, and was the first to be admitted to practice in
the new courthouse of this city. He has remained alone in his practice
and occupies the office in No. 16 Binford's block.